Better Business / Member news

BBRC joins the Better Business network

By Miles Arnold , Tuesday Sep 12, 2023

Bristol’s first regional home-grown, place-based impact investor BBRC (Bristol & Bath Regional Capital) has joined Bristol 24/7’s Better Business network, which helps businesses grow while they create a positive impact throughout Bristol.

BBRC creates significant local impact by raising and delivering investment to address longstanding inequalities, tackle environmental issues and responsibly manage property assets – investing across sectors to help create a flourishing local economy. In the last five years, it has brokered and placed over £50 million in the region.

BBRC’s local market insight and knowledge ensures it can guide investment into valuable and impactful businesses and development. Becoming a B24/7 Better Business member will enable it to further its local connections with other businesses that share the same goals of making Bristol a more equitable, sustainable and resilient city.

Better Business
Better Business is an initiative launched by Bristol24/7 to help businesses thrive, whilst creating a positive impact on Bristol and the people who live here.

It is responsible for the deployment of City Funds, which helps social enterprises and impact-driven businesses in Bristol. The £10m impact investment fund launched in 2019 as one of the first of its kind in the UK, bringing together investment, grant and local authority support in a unique collaboration between BBRC, Quartet Community Foundation, Bristol City Council and the Access Foundation.

A number of local organisations have received investment through City Funds, including the 4.2MW community-owned onshore wind turbine in Lawrence Weston, which received springboard funding of £750k, helping to leverage a further £5m from others including the West of England Combined Authority.

Other beneficiaries include the Park, a much-loved community hub in Knowle West, which received a £1m investment to enable a £9m project for a new purpose-built centre; and Albion Technologies, an innovative battery energy storage provider, which received £400k investment to establish a new manufacturing facility and create 90 green jobs over five years.

BBRC also has a strong commitment to tackling the housing crisis. It has formed a portfolio of properties consisting of co-living, keyworker-prioritised, refugee resettlement, and ethical market rent housing. The portfolio is focused on generating social and environmental impact for the region, demonstrated by the recent Elderberry Walk development in Southmead, built in collaboration with BBRC, Cheyne Capital and Brighter Places housing association.

In the next year, it will be working on setting up two new funds that focus on addressing the housing and climate crises.

Ed Rowberry, chief executive, BBRC, says: “We’re looking forward to being part of the B24/7 Better Business network, joining forces with other likeminded businesses and organisations and working together for the future good of the city.”

Main photo: BBRC (Bristol and Bath regional capital)

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